Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Writers Say They Weren’t Making A Taylor Swift Joke

Photo: Broadimage/REX/Shutterstock.
One line of dialogue in the second season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt sounded familiar. "You know there's a special place in hell for women who don't help other women," Titus tells Kimmy when she moves his Barbies out of their shower. Now, where have we heard that before? Of course, it's a Madeleine Albright quote, but back in 2013 Taylor Swift used it to hit back at Amy Poehler and, yes, Kimmy co-creator Tina Fey. Poehler and Fey had mocked Swift earlier that year at the Golden Globes when Fey told her to stay away from Michael J. Fox's son. Swift responded in Vanity Fair, saying "You know, Katie Couric is one of my favorite people, because she said to me she had heard a quote that she loved, that said, ‘There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.’" So it was easy to assume that the Kimmy joke was a pointed dig at Swift — and many did. Only, now, some of the the show's writers saying Swift had nothing to do with their decision to include the line. Vulture's Jesse David Fox inquired about the joke. "You were saying earlier, Allison, that we were just quoting Madeleine Albright," co-creator Robert Carlock responded. Writer Allison Silverman replied: "Yeah, it is a Madeleine Albright quote. I don't think I was actually in the room when that was happening. But I don't think there was anything else to it." Then, writer Meredith Scardino, chimed in: "I was in the area of pitching women tearing other women down, and then I forget who had that quote." So it really had nothing to do with Swift? Fox followed up by asking: "No one was aware that Taylor Swift said that specifically to Tina Fey like four years ago?" Carlock remained ignorant: "I don't recall." We're finding this all highly suspicious. It's not like the Swift quote is obscure. Fey has even brought it up herself. After Poehler won a Golden Globe in 2014, Fey said: "I just want to say congratulations again to my friend, Amy Poehler. I love you, and there's a special place in hell for you." She didn't explicitly name Swift, but it certainly seemed like a reference to the pop star. The Kimmy episode in which the line appears also features a guest appearance from Fey. Are we seriously meant to believe that no one brought up Swift in the writing process? Okay, sure.

More from TV

R29 Original Series